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Arizona copper mine to pay $60K fine over spill

PHOENIX -- Authorities said a southern Arizona copper mine has agreed to pay a $60,000 fine to resolve water quality violations over a 2010 pipeline spill.

Arizona Department of Environmental Quality officials also announced Tuesday that Silver Bell Mining LLC will do about $50,000 worth of preventive work as part of the consent judgment pending court approval. That includes drafting and implementing a pipeline operations and maintenance manual covering more than 20 miles of pipelines.

A rupture in a welded pipeline seam allowed 70,000 gallons of highly acidic solution to escape into a dry wash on Silver Bell property near Marana in June 2010.

ADEQ officials said mine workers reacted quickly and contained the discharge on the property. They recovered 13,000 gallons of liquids and removed 650 cubic yards of contaminated soil.

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